Statistician-General Pali Lehohla. Picture: ANA Pictures

Durban - Women in the the country were waiting longer to start families, Statistics South Africa said in its “Recorded Live Births for 2016” report, which was released on Thursday.

Statistician-General Pali Lehohla said the report showed the median age of mothers had increased from 26 to 27.

Overall, the report showed that 96 9415 births were registered for the previous year, a 10.6 percent decline from the 2015 figure of 1084 511.

Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal had the highest number of births, particularly around March and September.

Gauteng came in tops with 235218 births, with KwaZulu-Natal at 198628.

Pretoria recorded birth registrations at 87387 last time around, but came in third this year with 55866.

The capital was unseated by Cape Town with 61539 and Johannesburg with 57845.

Interestingly, more boys were born, 442301, while girls stood at 434134.

At 31521, Pretoria also recorded the highest number of late birth registrations for youngsters not older than 14.

Lehohla said what was most concerning was that more than two-thirds of birth registrations did not contain information on fathers. This is consistent with previous years’ findings.

On a lighter note, the top leading names for baby boys were, according to Lehohla, Junior, Blessing and Gift. Top baby girl names were Precious, Princess and Amahle.

For both sexes, Dlamini remained the most common surname for new babies as it was again ranked as the most familiar baby surname, like last year.

This was followed closely by Nkosi and Ndlovu.

Interestingly, nine of the top surnames were from Nguni people - isiZulu, isiXhosa, isiNdebele and siSwati.

Mokoena featured as the sixth most popular surname and the top non-Nguni surname.

The Mercury